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Metabolism. 1991 Jan;40(1):72-6.

Vitamin C and vitamin E status in the spontaneously diabetic BB rat before the onset of diabetes.

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Bureau of Nutritional Sciences, Banting Research Centre, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.


Ascorbic acid (AA), dehydroascorbic acid (DHAA), and vitamin E were measured in tissues and plasma of 30 control and 30 spontaneously diabetic BioBreeding rats (BBdp) during development and before the onset of diabetes. At weaning, rats were fed an AIN-76 semisynthetic diet for 30, 64, or 113 days, after which plasma and tissues from 10 rats of each group were collected and analysed for AA, DHAA, and vitamin E. AA and DHAA levels were significantly increased in plasma and spleen of the diabetes-prone rats compared with those of the control group at 30 and 64 days, but the difference disappeared by 113 days. No differences were observed in liver, adrenals, thymus, and pancreas at any of the time periods. However, lower levels of vitamin E were observed in adrenal gland, thymus, and pancreas of the diabetes-prone rats. It is concluded that BBdp rats have an altered metabolism of AA, DHAA, and vitamin E, before the onset of diabetes. These changes could be due to genetic and physiological factors operating during development of this rat strain.

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